Holidaying in COVID times: What it’s like in Lanzarote right now
Holidays abroad have become a complicated and angst-inducing prospect in the current climate. But for anyone willing and able to travel, now is the perfect time to visit Lanzarote. A chance to escape the negative news chatter, soak up some sunshine, breathe in the fresh Atlantic air and marvel at star-filled skies.
It’s like stepping back to a Lanzarote of 30 years ago…no queues at the airport, in shops, restaurants and tourist centres, tranquil beaches…and locals who are simply delighted to welcome you. Thanks to having far fewer cases than the mainland, the Canary Islands is the only region in Spain to be free from a night-time curfew.
Many of our regular guests have been in touch to ask what life is like in Lanzarote right now and how the travel experience compares to previously. We’ve compiled some of the most frequently asked questions below. Please do get in touch if there is anything we can help with that we haven’t addressed.
Is Lanzarote a safe destination to visit?
Lanzarote is one of the areas in the world least affected by COVID-19, and this makes the island one of the safest destinations to visit. The relatively low population combined with the vigilance of the locals is paying off.
What do I need to do before I fly to Lanzarote?
You will need to fill out a public health form electronically via the Spain Travel Health portal https://www.spth.gob.es/ in order to obtain a personal QR code to be shown at the airport on arrival.
As of 23 November, anybody entering Spain or the Canary Islands via air or sea travel (aged 6 years and over) from high-risk countries must provide a negative PCR test to be allowed to enter. The test must be acquired in the country of origin and be taken no more than 72 hours before travelling. In the UK, COVID-19 testing for international travel is not currently available on the NHS. Private tests can be purchased from certain high street pharmacies including Boots and Lloyds and from various online outlets as well as at some UK airports. Check the UK government list of private test providers here.
From 10 December, a TMA (Transcription-Mediated Amplification) swab test or a LAMP (Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification) test are also accepted by Spanish authorities, taken within no more than 72 hours prior to arrival. https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/spain
If you are returning to the UK from the Canary Islands you will need to self-isolate on your return. Passengers arriving into England have the option to shorten the self-isolation to five days on receipt of a negative COVID-19 test under the test to release scheme. Travellers will need to book and pay for a COVID-19 test from a private provider. You can find out more information on the UK Government website here: https://www.gov.uk/uk-border-control/ending-self-isolation-early-through-test-to-release
Anyone booked into regulated tourist accommodation will also be obliged to download and activate the Radar COVID notification app throughout their stay on the islands, and for 15 days after returning home.
What happens at the airport?
Wearing a mask is compulsory at the airport prior to departure, on the flight and on arrival to Lanzarote, where you must show your completed health form QR or printed version. You may also have your temperature taken.
What is it like in Lanzarote at the moment?
At the time of writing (October 2020) the island is open for business as usual.
Shops, restaurants and bars are working together with the government to make sure all safety measures are in place. Masks are to be worn in public places and bars and restaurants, these are removed once seated for eating or drinking.
All the beaches are open, respecting the 1.5m social distancing. Masks are not required once you are seated, sunbathing or swimming.
Key tourist attractions are also open, including César Manrique’s Cactus Gardens and Jameos del Agua Caves.
You do not need to pre-book and there is no requirement to check-in at any of the establishments or tourist centres.
You can surf, run and cycle with no mask on. The same for walking and hiking – masks are only required in urban areas.
We offer a VIP private airport transfer service, ensuring a stress-free arrival. Our driver will meet you, whisk you away with a glass of chilled Cava and answer any questions you have. He will also see you to your holiday home and be happy to show you the local area’s best restaurants, shops etc. If you would like a driver during your stay, or a car, we can arrange long term or day rates.
One of the benefits of booking with Lanzarote Retreats is that we’re here on the ground to help you with anything throughout your stay. Whether that’s keeping you up to date with any changes in local regulations, booking excursions, yoga or sailing or arranging food deliveries. Even helping with any last-minute changes to travel plans.
Do you have extra COVID-19 secure procedures in place?
We are carefully following government guidelines to ensure the safety of our staff and guests. New procedures in place include supplying our visitor information booklets in digital form – these can now be accessed via a scanned QR code.
How are the communal areas at Finca de Arrieta?
All the shared areas and the swimming pool at our eco-village Finca de Arrieta are operational. We ask guests to respect the 1.5m social distancing between each other. Masks are not required once you are seated, sunbathing or swimming.
Do you offer long stay rates?
Now is the ideal time to embrace the digital nomad lifestyle and plan a longer trip. We are very happy to welcome guests at Finca de Arrieta for long stays (minimum 28 nights) at a special price of 50 euros per room per night, based on two people sharing. Your accommodation will be private, with a fully equipped kitchen and en suite shower room.
We also have good rates available on private villas and seafront apartments, please get in touch.
What about travel insurance?
The Canary Island government is providing COVID-19 cover to all visitors under their own AXA insurance, including medical expenses and repatriation costs as well as any extension of stays due to quarantine.
We have also found a policy from Holiday Extras that provide cover even to countries under non-essential travel advisories. In partnership with battleface travel insurance, underwritten by Lloyd’s of London, Holiday Extras’ travel policy will cover medical expenses incurred by COVID-19 in destinations including Spain and Lanzarote.
What if I book a stay and cannot travel due to COVID-19?
Please ask the Lanzarote Retreats Team for details regarding your booking.
Lanzarote Retreats are not held responsible for Government Covid rule changes, seek up to date details before travel.